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The Knucklehead of the Day award

Today's winner is Palmetto General Hospital in Hialeah Florida. They get the award for the following-

A South Florida family plans to sue Palmetto General Hospital in Hialeah, saying their mother went in for a routine medical procedure and died as a result.

"I don't believe -- still to this day -- that's she's gone. I can't believe it," said Jorge Perez.

Matilde Perez, 62, was admitted to Palmetto General Hospital in Hialeah after a fainting spell on Dec. 17. Six days later, she died.

She was at the hospital for an angiogram to clear a clogged carotid artery.

Family members said they were told things were going fine, but in the middle of the procedure, the power went out.


Ellsley said doctors told the family the backup battery on the CT machine they were using to guide the catheter through Perez's artery malfunctioned, and after the electrical blip, the doctor could not see what he was doing.

"It's a little like operating an airplane in the middle of the night with failed instruments," Ellsley said.

In a statement to Local 10, Palmetto General confirmed the fluctuation in power led to Perez's death, calling it an unforeseen and tragic consequence.

"We conducted an internal review and notified the state agency, which noted in its report that no hospital deficiencies were found," the statement read.

The hospital also noted that it has faithfully served the community for more than 35 years and will continue to dedicate its efforts to putting patients first and providing the highest quality care to those who entrust their care to the facility.

The hospital didn't serve Mrs. Perez or her family and she is gone forever because of their neglect. There are supposed to be procedures in place to prevent these happenings, I know because I worked in radiology for over twenty years of my life. Palmetto General Hospital better get ready to sign a check with lots of zeroes on it, but first I name them today's Knucklehead of the Day.

Hat tip- SFDB


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Comments (6)

Accidents happen, especiall... (Below threshold)

Accidents happen, especially the unforeseen, non medical accident. The hospital and the physician's are not responsible for the death of this patient.

Why don't you direct your outrage toward the Electrical company or the contractor that caused the electrical failure? That is the true source of this tradgity and I am curious as to why you only blame the Hospital and Physicians.

No wonder medical costs are... (Below threshold)
Les Nessman:

No wonder medical costs are so high. Sue, sue, sue. Gonna get me somes big payday because the electric went out.
Better watch out, though. When Brocko nationalizes healthcare, you won't be allowed to sue state-run healthcare for big jackpots anymore.

There is a lot of informati... (Below threshold)

There is a lot of information lacking here to allow one to determine negligence. The SUE mentality will not fix things, but will make folks more defensive and costs rise. Bill, this kind of emotional response is what has made trial lawyers like Edwards rich and medical care dictated by legal rather than logical standards.

A change in dealing with sentinel events that utilizes the same methods used for aircraft accidents, as well as country-wide changes in tort, now that would lead to real improvements in safety. Your nonsense response plus the Obama/Daschle Health Plan will make treatment of you problems by advanced technologies, cutting edge therapies, all out of reach to all but the fabulously rich in but a year or two. You'll be foaming at the keyboard like a regretful Obama supporter.

They use CT to advance guid... (Below threshold)

They use CT to advance guidwires and catheters??? hmnmmm Never heard of that before.

Such a sad tragedy, but I h... (Below threshold)

Such a sad tragedy, but I have to agree with the other posters--this was not the hospital's fault. To sue would be another tragedy because insurance and everything else would go up, which might lead to more budget cuts that could have prevented this from happening in the first place.

Still, people think suing and getting "death money" will someone make it all better?

They use CT to advance g... (Below threshold)
John S:

They use CT to advance guidewires and catheters??? hmnmmm Never heard of that before.
I agree that someone who says they worked in radiology for 20 years did not catch this???

First of all if it is a GE system there is a battery back up system to preserve the image data. It may or may not be capable of providing fluoro to withdraw the catheter during a power loss. It depends on the size of the UPS purchased. The back up plan should be a mobile fluoro system to withdraw the catheter. Right now there is not enough information in this article to come to a judgment on this. For all we know they may have tried to withdraw it without deflating it. That would implicate the Physician.

I understand why Bill is not working in Radiology anymore.






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